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Be Alert to Bogus Concrete Repair Offers

The reports of some deteriorating foundations affecting certain homes in eastern Connecticut may give rise to scammers seeking to exploit the issue for their own gain. The Department of Consumer Protection urges you to be on the alert for these scams. There may be contractors and/or bogus contractors who contact you, offering to make repairs.

Watch out for potential fraudulent contractors who may:

  • Go door-to-door or contact you by phone, possibly indicating that they have to inspect your foundation.
  • Offer to handle any insurance claim on your behalf. 
  • Indicate that they are “specialists” in this type of repair.
    • If this claim is made, request further verification, including documentation of all professional credentials and a list of references.
    • You may also want to ask your municipal building officials if they know anything about this contractor.
  • Use high pressure sales tactics and create a sense of fear or urgency that the damage needs to be repaired immediately.
    • If this claim is made, obtain additional input from local contractors and/or your town building inspector.
  • Offer discounts, especially cash discounts for immediate work. 

Before signing any contracts for repairs:

  • Check for the contractor’s complaint history with DCP and other sources such as the Better Business Bureau and your municipal building officials.
  • Obtain multiple quotes. Due to the nature of the situation, you may wish to consult with a professional engineer to approve your contractor’s repair plan.
Do not pay too much money up front. Try to pay in four installments --  ¼ upfront, ¼ upon start of work, ¼ when three fourths of the job is completed, and final payment after the work is completed and you receive a certificate of occupancy and the engineer’s sign off.
  • If an insurance company is involved, you should deal with the insurance company, not the contractor. If you have questions regarding interpretation of your policy, you may email questions to: cid.ca@ct.gov, Attention: Gerard O’Sullivan. Please send a copy to DCP at dcp.concrete@ct.gov.
  • You may wish to seek out a public adjuster, an insurance claims adjuster who advocates for the policyholder in appraising and negotiating a claimant's insurance claim. Also be sure to work with the insurance company about the payment schedule with your contractor, which should correspond with the progress of the work, and not be subject to the contractor's demands.
    • Make sure building permits are secured before any repair work takes place -- always contact your local building official first.
    • Confirm that your contractor carries liability and workers’ compensation insurance for his or her employees.
    • Obtain lien waivers from all subcontractors and suppliers, just in case the contractor fails to pay them.
    If you have further questions, please feel free to call the Department of Consumer Protection at 1-800-842-2649 or email dcp.concrete@ct.gov.